On the Feast of St Francis I look forward to the resurrection of the dead

On the Feast of St Francis I look forward to the resurrection of the dead

Saint Francis of Assisi Receiving the Stigmata by Jan van Eyck
Saint Francis of Assisi Receiving the Stigmata by Jan van Eyck

Today is the feast of St Francis of Assisi. Eight years ago in February I lost a baby who we named Francis and who, had I been able to carry to term, would have been born in September of that year. This is the 8th celebration of a nameday feast for a child I never got to hold but who I look forward to one day seeing in heaven.

I haven’t cried much over Francis. I got most of my crying done in the first weeks after the miscarriage and mostly I think about our lost baby with a calm heart. But last night we noted the day and this morning Ben asked me, “Who is Francis?” and once again I told the story that I know I’ve told him many times before:

“Francis is the child who was growing inside of me after Bella was born and who died before he or she was born.”

Ben replied that surely Francis is in heaven with Jesus.

And that was that. Until suddenly when we were praying the Creed at Mass today and I spoke the words, “I look forward to the resurrection of the dead” and suddenly the floodgates opened and the tears streamed down my face on and off for the rest of Mass.

I look forward to the resurrection of the dead.

When that little tiny one I never got to hold or see will, God willing, be reunited with the rest of us, where we will finally see each other face to face in our new glorious bodies.

I look forward not backward. I live in hope and joy, sure that someday we will finally be together.

Today I thank St Francis on this his feast, thank him for the gift of tears, knowing that today I weep but someday I will laugh.

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  • I am sorry for the loss of your dear little Francis. While it is true that most tears fall in the time right after a miscarriage, the passage of the years and the thought of how old the child would be is a stinging pain as well. I also find that tears come so easily in church for any reason; I believe it is due to being in the Real Presence of Our Lord and also that Reality is so clear while at Mass (as you noted the words of the Creed striking you). I hope you enjoy a blessed Feast Day with your family as you remember your little Francis.

  • Prayers for your family especially on this day as you celebrate your Francis; in empathy, as we also await the joy of knowing our Teresa fully in heaven.

  • I remember reading the story of your miscarriage, Melanie. So very sorry. Grief sometimes sneaks up on us when we are least expecting it and a simple phrase, a scent, a song, etc. can cause the floodgates to open.

    I firmly believe that we will all be reunited with our loved ones in heaven. You will see your son and you will know him immediately. One of my favorite Bible verses is Revelation 21:4 – “And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away.”

    Hugs to you.

  • We recently suffered our first miscarriage and your words really resonated with me tonight. Thank you for sharing them.